Australasian Horses Dominate Hong Kong End of Season Awards

Tara Madgwick - Tuesday July 13

Aussie bred Medaglia D’Oro (USA) gelding Golden Sixty’s outstanding exploits during the 2020/21 season earned the multiple Group 1 winner the Hong Kong Horse of the Year award at a special presentation function held at Happy Valley Clubhouse on Tuesday night.

The Francis Lui-trained five-year-old was also named Champion Miler and Champion Middle-Distance Horse as well as securing the bulk of the public vote to claim the Most Popular Horse title for the second consecutive year.

Golden Sixty was sold as a yearling at Magic Millions and then bought for Hong Kong at NZB Ready to Run - image HKJC

The 2019/20 season’s Champion Four-Year-Old showed further improvement this term, with a perfect record of seven wins from seven starts, with the last four wins all at G1 level.

Since September 2019, he has maintained an unbeaten run of 14 and he is the first horse to capture the G1 LONGINES Hong Kong Mile (1600m), G1 Stewards’ Cup (1600m), G1 Citi Hong Kong Gold Cup (2000m) and G1 FWD Champions Mile (1600m) in the same season, highlighting his versatility and brilliance.  

Golden Sixty was bred in Australia by Element Hill and sold as a yearling at Magic Millions for $120,000 before being purchased for Hong Kong from the NZB Ready to Run Sale for $300,000.

He is the fourth horse in Hong Kong racing history after Good Ba Ba, Able Friend and Beauty Generation to win the Horse of the Year title in the same season as winning both the G1 LONGINES Hong Kong Mile and G1 FWD Champions Mile. In addition to his four G1 wins, Golden Sixty also took the G2 Jockey Club Mile (1600m), G2 Oriental Watch Sha Tin Trophy (1600m) and the G3 Celebration Cup (1400m).

Torryburn Stud bred and sold Denman gelding Hot King Prawn was named the season’s Champion Sprinter.

Torryburn Stud bred and sold Hot King Prawn.

The John Size-trained six-year-old opened his G1 winning account in the Centenary Sprint Cup (1200m) in January this year. A $90,000 Inglis Classic purchase, he was a steady performer throughout the season, finishing out of money only once in his five starts since last October. He also won the G2 Jockey Club Sprint (1200m) last November.

Chilean import Panfield was crowned Champion Stayer. The Tony Millard-trained runner was already a G1 victor prior to his arrival in Hong Kong. After opening his Hong Kong winning account in a Class 2 event over 2000m, the Lookin At Lucky colt ran a gallant third behind Sky Darci in the BMW Hong Kong Derby (2000m). He then achieved a career-peak when defeating older rivals, including Exultant, in the G1 Standard Chartered Champions & Chater Cup (2400m) in May.   

A $160,000 Karaka Book 1 purchase from the Highden Park draft, Darci Brahma gelding Sky Darci was the deserving winner of the Four-Year-Old Champion award.

Sky Darci was a Karaka Book 1 purchase from the Highden Park draft
The Caspar Fownes-trained galloper won five races this season, including the BMW Hong Kong Derby, the final leg of the Four-Year-Old Classic Series and the G3 Lion Rock Trophy (1600m). In his final start of the season, he also finished a creditable second behind stablemate Sky Field in another G3 event, the Premier Cup (1400m).

Bred and sold by Woodside Park, Fantastic Treasure was a $45,000 Inglis Premier purchase and was named the season’s Champion Griffin after remaining unbeaten with five wins from five starts in his rookie season in Hong Kong.

Woodside Park bred and sold Fantastic Treasure.

The David Hayes-trained three-year-old son of Written Tycoon achieved his career highlight to date in a Class 2 1400m contest at Sha Tin, defeating seasoned gallopers to achieve a rating of 94.

The John Size-trained Courier Wonder was named the season’s Most Improved Horse. After starting the campaign on a rating of 52, the Sacred Falls gelding soared 55 points to a mark of 107 after remaining unbeaten with five wins from five starts.

Waikato Stud bred and sold Courier Wonder.
Courier Wonder was a $150,000 Karaka Book 1 purchase from the Waikato Stud draft.

Caspar Fownes was honoured with the Champion Trainer title. The battle for the championship was settled before the season finale and Fownes was most deserving of his fourth title, having led for the majority of the season before repelling a strong charge from 11-time champion, John Size.  

Joao Moreira was crowned Champion Jockey for a fourth time. The Brazilian rider had a fantastic season of achievements, including becoming only the third jockey in history to notch 1000 winners in Hong Kong. He also won the public vote to earn the Most Popular Jockey of the Year accolade.

The winner of the Tony Cruz Award for the season’s leading homegrown rider will be revealed and presented during racing at Wednesday’s season finale (14 July) at Happy Valley.

Former Hong Kong Champions Beauty Generation and Exultant were presented with the Lifetime Achievement Awards for their great contributions to Hong Kong racing.

The winners for the 2020/21 season are listed as follows:-

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Award

Winner

Owner

Trainer

Horse of the Year

Golden Sixty (AUS)

Stanley Chan Ka Leung

Francis Lui

Champion Trainer

Caspar Fownes

 

 

Champion Jockey

Joao Moreira

 

 

Champion Four-Year-Old

Sky Darci (NZ)

Jessica Kwan Mun Hang

Caspar Fownes

Champion Sprinter

Hot King Prawn (AUS)

Lau Sak Hong

John Size

Champion Miler

Golden Sixty (AUS)

Stanley Chan Ka Leung

Francis Lui

Champion Middle-Distance Horse

Golden Sixty (AUS)

Stanley Chan Ka Leung

Francis Lui

Champion Stayer

Panfield (Chi)

Yue Yun Hing

Tony Millard

Champion Griffin

Fantastic Treasure (AUS)

Ken Leung Woon Kin & Leung Kwun

David Hayes

Most Improved Horse

Courier Wonder (NZ)

Mr & Mrs Chadwick Mok Cham Hung

John Size

Most Popular Horse of the Year

Golden Sixty (AUS)

Stanley Chan Ka Leung

Francis Lui

Most Popular Jockey of the Year

Joao Moreira

 

 

Lifetime Achievement Award

Beauty Generation (NZ)

Patrick Kwok Ho Chuen

John Moore / David Hayes

Lifetime Achievement Award

Exultant (IRE)

Eddie Wong Ming Chak & Wong Leung Sau Hing

Tony Cruz

Most Admired Overseas Horse

Almond Eye (Jpn)

 

 
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